I reached out to a friend last week. I needed some perspective. I am in a tough place. The world is a tough place to be in. And it feels impossible. And I need perspective. Because I don’t know what to do.
I go from rage to grief to anger (which is a bit less of an energy place than rage and feels more doable and lasts much longer) and I don’t quite know where to land.
My orbit is small. And the information is dark. And I am in despair.
And surprised. By my Jewishness.
I am surprised by my Jewishness. By the importance of my Jewishness. And by the fact that this important part of me only lit up when blatant Anti-Semitism lit up our College and University campuses, and in our cities and towns all over the United States.
I am not surprised by this level of Anti-Semitism. This does not surprise me. I am surprised by how quickly and easily people have embraced this hate. And how quiet so many people are in the face of the ease in which so many have embraced this hate. But this fact of it, this fact of the immensity of Anti-Semitism, this does not surprise me. It’s always been here. It’s just come out from under wraps.
Like me. I have always been Jewish. And my Jewishness is now unwrapped.
I am exploring this now. This newfound understanding of the importance of being Jewish. This is part of the bucket I am in. The bucket of what this means for me. Of how I want to hold it. Of how I want to live it.
The likelihood of changing how I live it is slim to none honestly. This is not what I mean. It’s more the awareness of it. The defining quality of me. Where I used to be a 61-year-old woman, now I am a 61-year-old Jewish woman. And this is new. And means something. Something important to me. I still don’t know what exactly that this is.
So this is a part of the despair. The not knowing quite where I am at in this Jewishness of me. But figuring it out. And it will come.
And then there is the other part. The second part of the sentence. The “..this important part of me only lit up when blatant Anti-Semitism lit up...” The Anti-Semitism part.
And I want to find a way to not sit in the darkness of this. Each day, every day. I do not mean that I want to ignore it. Certainly not ignore it. Not turn away or say it’s not so big because I know it is so big.
Just to offer in some light into this darkness that I feel heavily cloaked in during this very sad time.
So I went looking for goodness. I googled goodness. Goodness right now. What is happening that is good right now.
At first, I couldn’t find anything. No matter what I googled, what I searched for, the search turned my words around and shared only the darkness.
But then, over these last few days, goodness is cropping up. A post on Instagram. A story from a friend. A video shared on a group chat. The collective consciousness is feeling this need for kindness and showing up. Seeing our sameness. Recognizing each other’s pain. Connecting as humans.
I believe we need more of this.
If you feel so called—share something beautiful with me. Share with me some news in the world that is kind. Share a place in this world where good work is being done. Where people are standing up and supporting each other. Where the polarity of good and evil is not playing out over and over again. Show me the goodness. We need to see love.
Mother, Wife, Friend, Sister, Daughter, Dancer, Rower, Runner, Dog and Cat lover.